Donegal Lamb Ragu with Rigatoni Pasta

Food Coast Donegal has teamed up with Chris Molloy of The Lemon Tree Restaurant Letterkenny to bring you a series of delicious Donegal lamb recipes showcasing the versatility of Donegal Lamb.

Donegal Lamb Ragu with Rigatoni Pasta

Recipe by Chris Molloy, Lemon Tree Restaurant

Serves: 4

Chris Molloy Chef


  • Donegal Rapeseed Oil for frying
  • 800g diced lamb
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 60ml red wine
  • 2 x 400g tins of tomato
  • 500ml lamb or chicken stock
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • Salt and pepper
  • 250g Rigatoni pasta shells
  • Parmesan, to serve
  • Chopped parsley, to serve

Chris Molloy Chef 1


  1. Heat a large pot over medium-high heat then add the oil.
  2. Once the oil is hot, add the lamb and brown meat on all sides. Remove the meat and set aside.
  3. Add the red wine and scrape any brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  4. Add the carrot, celery and stir in the tinned tomato, stock, and sugar. Add the browned lamb and thyme and season lightly with salt and pepper.
  5. Semi-cover the pot with its lid then reduce heat to medium-low and leave to cook for 1-2 hours, stirring occasionally, until lamb is tender, and the sauce has thickened.
  6. Taste for seasoning and add more salt if needed.
  7. Cook pasta according to package instructions then drain the pasta and add it to the lamb ragu, giving it a gentle toss through the sauce.
  8. Serve with grated parmesan cheese and chopped parsley.

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